Little Wheel Spin & Spin

Posted on May 14, 2010


Little wheel spin & spin

The big wheel goes a-rouuund & a-rouuund

That’s Buffy Sainte-Marie singing.

The little wheel & the big wheel are all part of the same clockwork, as you realize if you think about it.  In a clockwork, little wheels do spin & spin, & mesh with larger wheels.  The spin & spin of the little wheels becomes, at the places where they join, the powerful but more deliberate motion of the larger wheels.  It is in fact all the same motion, transformed.  That is in the nature of clockworks, and other machines.

O the sins of Caesar’s men

Cry the pious citizens.

Caesar sins big, but we sin small.

Yet we are all, when you look behind things—and perhaps at varying levels of complicity—Caesar’s men.  We pay his taxes and walk along his highways.  When Caesar is victorious, we go to his party and drink his wine.  And we even get to vote thumbs down every once in a while.

One thumb is trivial.

Don’t we all know that it’s still Caesar’s carnival?

Little wheel spin & spin.

Of course, times have changed & Caesar’s moved on.  Caesar has a smokestack now.  We only drive cars.  (Cars built in Caesar’s factory.  In Caesar’s factory where all of us work.)

O, shame to Caesar!

But Caesar is a prideful puppet.  Caesar is the Great Oz.  Caesar is a mighty voice.  We shake before him, and say he must be subdued, reigned in.

Yet behind the curtain, speaking into the microphone and working mightily at the levers, why that is us too.

Without his men, there is no Caesar.  Without the cogs, there is no machine.

We are currently part of a machine which is devouring the earth, which is stealing any chance of a good life from our grandchildren.

Our prosperity—our fashions & our throw-away technology—is a product of the machine, and our continuing prosperity can only be purchased at the cost of our grandchildren’s poverty.

Little wheel spin & spin

We can continue, and choose to add our little spin & spin to the great clockwork.

Or we can choose not.


Buffy Sainte-Marie – Little Wheel Spin & Spin


See also

Posted in: climate change